The Avon Lake Shoremen hockey team will be in search of a new head coach immediately, as head coach Fran Sullivan has decided to step down following the 2017-18 season. Sullivan told The Morning Journal about his decision on Friday after informing his team after their end of the year banquet this past Tuesday.
Sullivan was the head coach of the Shoremen for five seasons, accumulating an overall record of 71-66-4. He finally brought Avon Lake their first Baron Cup Championship last season after defeating Normandy in the Baron Cup III Championship Game. Sullivan then took his team to new heights, as they knocked off Baron Cup II Champions Amherst Steele and Baron Cup II finalist Olmsted Falls in district play before falling to Rocky River by a final score of 6-0. Sullivan’s team fought valiantly to the end, something he envisioned when he took the job five years ago.
Sullivan spoke to The Morning Journal about his decision in-depth.
“When I took over, there were plenty of people in the Avon Lake community that had no idea there was a hockey team,” Sullivan told Jon Behm of The Morning Journal. “I wanted to change that, and I think we- me, the coaches, the team- achieved that.”
The Shoremen only mustered three victories in Sulivan’s first two campaigns, as a learning period had to first be instilled by the coaching staff. The growth shown by the team was remarkable, as Sullivan helped lead them to their first winning season since 2006-07.
But now it’s time for Sullivan to spend time with his family, who supported him throughout his entire coaching tenure.
“There’s a lot of time involved with coaching, a lot of behind-the-scenes things that you have to do,” Sullivan told the Morning Journal. “I’ve gotten a lot of support from my family over the years, so it’s time for me to give that time back to them.”